Adapting to a More Digital Audience
I have to admit - I'm a big fan of the internet and all that it can do to bring people and ideas together. A few months ago I even (grudging) signed up for Facebook, only to be delighted by the regular connection I have with friends from long ago and family from far away. Even though I studied bassoon performance in my undergraduate (I went to school at Carnegie Mellon University, which is famed for its techie atmosphere) I was surrounded by computers (called 'clusters') and innovation that helped people do more things without actually being together in the same room.
I came to work at the Philadelphia Chamber Music Society after an interesting 5-6 years: I played professionally as a freelance bassoonist; I started and grew a web design business with my wife; I helped my brother as he managed an internet datacenter company...and yet I was thrilled to join PCMS because of its unique ability to do something unique and valuable: provide meaningful, personal interaction through the enjoyment of great live music.
As our society becomes more "digital" and many of us go to work only to plug into a computer and work with virtual teams, it's refreshing and exciting to be a part of bringing people physically together for something vibrant and alive like chamber music. When you come to hear the Quatuor Mosaiques in April (or any of our dozens of concerts this Winter and Spring), you'll join a few hundred at the intimate Perelman Theater to see four talented performers bring Mozart, Schubert, and Hadyn to life! To me, that's a special and valuable product, and I'm glad to be a part of it.
As a Development Director who moonlights on his lunch-hour in the marketing department, I'm very aware of how the internet has helped solve some problems, but has created others. For example: PCMS, which is well known for its close relationships with audience members and consistently friendly service, has had to adapt to an increasingly digital customer base. This year alone, hundreds of our ticket buyers have found us through Google searches and purchased tickets online, never once speaking to our box office staff! This presents a new challenges for us as we forge relationships via proactive email, follow-up phone calls, and even informal "meet and greets" at concerts.
One thing we want to ensure is that we're serving you, our audience, as best we can. If you have see room for improvement in how we're communicating with you about our concerts or events, I for one would love to hear your feedback! Please take the time to stop by the office, call, or email and let me know your thoughts!